As a child in the '60s, everyone I knew went to one of the local churches in our small town. In my small mind, I assumed that my friends just did the same things we did in church but because of location, they attended their closest one. We moved across town when I was 11, and I made a new friend living right beside me. One of our daily discussions was what our moms were making for dinner that night. It was then I was told that "you have to eat fish every Friday." Confused, I asked my mom why we didn't eat fish on Fridays?

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This started my education that not all religions do the same things. Actually, it's the abstinence of eating warm-blooded meat once a week that was the mandate in her church. Hence, it became "Fish Friday.". A bit of trivia… the McDonald's fish sandwich was introduced to spark sales on Fridays since they saw a decrease in revenue every week on that day. We are now in the season of Lent which is the time when you give something up. It's also the time where meat is abstained from on Fridays. You could make my etouffee with fish as well as shrimp and this is my contribution to the season of lent. The only thing not given up? Taste!!!

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Lori Edmonds is a Reisterstown resident and can be reached via email at silkypup@msn.com.

Ingredients
-- 2 lbs. raw, peeled and deveined shrimp
-- 1 liter of seafood stock or vegetable stock
-- 4 cups prepared rice
-- 1 cup chopped celery
-- 1 cup chopped onion
-- 3 stalks green onion, sliced thin
-- 1 cup chopped green pepper
-- 1/2 cup flour
-- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
-- 1 tsp. to 1 tbs. Emeril's Cajun seasoning or any other Cajun seasoning, according to taste

Directions
You first have to make a roux. In a large pot, add the oil and flour and cook on medium high, constantly stirring for approximately 10 minutes until the roux is a golden tan color. Add the stock and stir until incorporated and it begins to thicken. Add the onion, celery, peppers, 2/3 of the sliced green onion and seasoning into the stock and simmer for 20 minutes. Add the shrimp to the sauce and cook for only about 2 minutes or until the shrimp turn pink. Serve over a mound of rice and add plenty of sauce. Garnish with the rest of the green onion. Etouffee means "smother," so don't skimp on the sauce!



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